Our Students

Promoting healthy behaviors and getting ready for a career in medicine

Adam Burkett is discovering new ways to help people and promote healthy behaviors through opportunities in the College of Health and Human Development and at Penn State.

Majoring in Biobehavioral Health is giving Adam a mix of knowledge from different fields—biology, psychology, sociology, and environmental studies. Because the major offers knowledge in so many fields, Adam can pick an area of his interest and tailor his classes appropriately. Adam has been especially interested in taking nutrition classes.

“I like the three-front approach to human health and disease—the biological, the psychological, and the human side,” he says.

The fact that so many courses in BBH are hands-on and stress the application of knowledge is something Adam finds beneficial. In one class, Adam and his classmates created health promotion programs that would address a pressing health issue in the college community. The class also taught various theories and philosophies of health promotion and the psychology behind making major changes in a person’s daily life.

The faculty of the BBH department has been especially supportive of Adam throughout his time at Penn State. “The professors are great,” he says. “It’s a very tight-knit community—especially the BBH department.”

Kinesiology classes also benefitted Adam greatly. Adam is an emergency medical technician (EMT), a role in which he responds to situations that require immediate medical attention. He trained and became certified for this role through classes taught through the Department of Kinesiology. He helps staff an ambulance at events on campus, such as THON and football games.

“It is great experience,” he says. “I get to work with people in the community, and I get training in skills I know I’ll be using later in life.”

Adam wants to pursue a career in health care and medicine, and the opportunities in the College of Health and Human Development are preparing him for this.